DON’T WAIT UNTIL THE DAMAGE IS DONE! The Importance of Good Martial Art Basics for Kids: by Calasanz

As a parent, you send your child to school with the expectation that he or she will learn the basics. Basics are the building blocks of a good, solid education. As a parent, I’m sure you’d be quite upset if your child’s school to failed to teach the fundamentals of reading, writing and arithmetic before your child moved on to more complex subjects. Why is it that parents don’t have the same expectations when it comes to martial arts training? As long as the kid is “having fun,” who cares about the basics? As long as the school gives out a lot of belts, patches and certificates to make the child “feel good,” so what?

Many parents unknowingly fall into this trap. It is vital that good basic techniques and proper body mechanics are emphasized at the beginning of your child’s martial arts training. A child’s joints are developing and care should be taken to train the child slowly and carefully to avoid long-term damage. Emphasizing good techniques that develop proper balance and coordination is key to teaching a child how to control his or her body.

There is a tendency to wait until the child is older to explain the reasons for executing techniques properly and to make physical corrections. This, in my opinion is a big mistake. Unfortunately, once bad habits are formed, they are very hard to break. We see this in children who come to us from other systems. We can easily tell if a child’s previous instructor spent any time creating a good foundation. While some schools do a great job, others fail miserably. Now we have to spend the time helping the student correct the damage already done!

Teaching children is not easy and when you have a lot of them in one room, the instructor may not have the patience, skill or even manpower to make sure that the child is moving properly. Others simply just don’t care. The consequences of this attitude, however, may result in serious injuries that may damage your child for the rest of his or her life.

Demand the same attention to basics in your child’s martial arts program. While having fun and developing “self-esteem” is nice, you wouldn’t feel the same way if your child couldn’t read because he or she never learned the alphabet!

 Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

1-203-847-6528

507 Westport Ave, Norwalk CT 06851

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

www.greenwichselfdefense.com

 

Children are taught to know themselves at Calasanz Martial Arts.

Calasanz has spent many years working primarily with children and has proven to himself that he can get his message across even to young minds. Other instructors have asked him, “What is your secret? How do you teach martial arts to children so young?” The answer is simple. Calasanz explains that he emphasizes basic techniques which help at a range of different levels.

When Calasanz first went into business and began to promote childrens’ classes a lot of parents were scared to enroll their children at the school. By this time Calasanz had earned a reputation in the area for producing some of the toughest fighters. What the parents did not see and were not aware of is that while Martial Arts training can produce a tough and durable fighter, real Martial Arts training teaches people not to fight. Calasanz emphasizes defense and respect for your Martial Arts knowledge and abilities. He teaches children never to be the aggressor and not to strike your friends, brothers or sisters because they could hurt somebody with their ability.

When it comes to childrens’ martial arts training there innumerable benefits to be reaped from such a pursuit, not all of which are physical. In traditional school or community team sports some children don’t make the final cut to get on the team and while some schools and community programs have tried to remedy this at the end of the day even those that make the team may spend a good deal of time on the bench. In martial arts training every child, regardless of their capabilities is welcomed and capable of practicing and improving themselves. This gives a child a sense of pride, that yes they can participate within a group, and yes, they can engage in physical activity.

Another benefit of the Calasanz System is that a code of conduct is put into place which promotes self-discipline, respect, and courtesy. Those whose purpose of studying martial arts to gain an aggressive edge are quickly set straight. Calasanz encourages a positive respectful attitude both inside and outside of the school.

Training in martial arts will also greatly improve a child’s concentration and attention span. It will increase their physical fitness as well sharpen their mental abilities.

Children who practice the martial arts become aware of their surroundings.

So what type of improvement do children see from the Calasanz system? Well, all of the above plus many amazing physical improvements. Improved coordination, balance, strength, power, grounding, and focus. Through the practicing of drills, coaching, sparring, forms, and katas your children will have strengthened joints and a basic knowledge of aerobic isolation and isometric movements which gives the Calasanz system its unique qualities and ultimately its name.

All of these improvements not only increase a child’s performance in their particular sport, but also in all other areas of their lives. The Calasanz System focuses on building a child by improving not only their body but also their character.

 Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

1-203-847-6528

507 Westport Ave, Norwalk CT 06851

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

www.bedfordkickboxing.com

Is MMA Good for Kids? by Calasanz

The popularity of mixed martial arts competitions, or MMA has naturally spawned an interest in children who want to pursue the sport. This has created a rising demand for MMA instruction and most parents turn to martial art schools as their first source.

Despite its popularity, there is a lot of controversy surrounding MMA for kids. The goal in an MMA match is a knockout or submission through a choke hold or limb lock, where kids have to “tap out” to signal to their partners that it’s enough. Many find the practice of teaching children how to fight so aggressively barbaric and are calling for a ban of the sport. Many parents and martial artists are horrified at sight of young children being cheered on for attacking each other and the message that this is sending to young impressionable minds. 

Unfortunately, kids have taped themselves fighting MMA style and have posted it on You Tube, just like kids have done with backyard wrestling.  Some of the kids who post their fights are beating the daylights out of each other in their living rooms or garages. In some of these videos, there is no safety gear, no adult in sight supervising their actions nor have they had adequate training.  This is a disaster waiting to happen. 

My other concern is the MMA tournaments for children.  While training in a well-structured class with a competent, safety conscious instructor is fine with me, you lose a lot of that control when your children participate in tournament competition.  You don’t know who your child is fighting against and how this child has been trained.  The reality is that there are many instructors and parents training their own kids, who teach them how to fight dirty and don’t both fostering good sportsmanlike behavior. 

While some of these tournaments are well organized and pay close attention to safety regulations, others are not and you are putting your child at risk. It will be tournaments like this that create an environment for serious injuries and may eventually force the government to step in. There is also a lot of concern, especially from the medical community that children who participate in MMA are prone to elbow, knee, wrist, ankle, neck and shoulder injuries.

The reality however is that children who participate in sports are always at risk for injuries whether they play football, baseball, basketball, ice hockey, gymnastics or even cheerleading.  Many kids also end up getting injured just by riding their bikes.  Injuries are a part of an active child’s life.  The bottom line is that if your son or daughter wants to learn MMA, you have to choose a school and an instructor who puts safety first.  So as a parent, don’t just sign up your kid at the first school that offers MMA classes.  Pay close attention to the instructor’s attitude, teaching style and attention to safety. 

ESPN and ABC’s 20/20 have both aired mainstream media investigative reports on the topic. The ABC 20/20 segment showcased Gillett’s Mixed Martial Arts Gym in Fall River, Massachusetts.  If all children who wanted to learn mixed martial arts had access to a school like this one, I would say “go for it.”  From what I observed in this segment and others featuring the same school, I found it to be a very responsible martial arts establishment.

The first thing I liked about the school is that the boys and girls in the segments wore headgear and the gloves with substantial padding. The instructors were adequately supervising the kids and actively coaching during the course of the matches. Several parents were interviewed and were very pleased with the results of the instruction.  They found their children were more disciplined, respectful and also improved in school. They also said that their kids don’t use MMA outside of the school. This is a sign of good instruction.  Interestingly, the mayor of Fall River, Robert Correia, who blasted the school, never even visited the place nor did he take the time out to talk to those involved.

Bottom line is that when any martial art, traditional or mixed, is taught by a competent instructor, a child is reaps the benefits.  Boys and girls who participate in any martial art tend to be less violent and more responsible than their counterparts.  This just doesn’t happen by accident.  Training with a qualified instructor minimizes injuries and does not teach violence. So if your child wants to train in MMA, take the time to find a good school.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

1-203-847-6528

507 Westport Ave, Norwalk CT 06851

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

www.norwalkboxing.com

Children and Parents in the Martial Arts: by Calasanz

Click Here for Great Images of: Beauty, Reality, Power, Style and Balance from Calasanz Martial Arts & Fitness!!!

Occasionally a parent enters a dojo and wants to sign up their child for martial arts lessons; honestly, sometimes the parent or parents is the one that should sign up. One day, and without using names, this exact situation occurred where a parent brought their kid into an area where people train while the parent sat around in the lobby and let the kid run wild. This kid opened cabinets where weapons are kept, including swords and other sharp objects and he played with them. Also, this child went into the gym part of the dojo where heavy weights are all around and attempted to use the cardio machines: keep in mind that all this was done without signing a waiver. When we asked the parent about his child’s behavior they acted like it was not a big deal when clearly it was. What if this child was injured around all this equipment or on a weapon? We do not want anyone, students and visitors included, to injure themselves in our school for any reason, least of all being neglect.

Some people may come to the conclusion that this kid needed the discipline that martial arts provides and while that is true, the parent of this kid also needs some discipline of their own because it is a parent’s duty to keep their children in check. Studying here could provide them with a great parent/child activity and it would give them discipline in there everyday lives and set a good example. A child mimics what he or she observes on a daily basis which for the most part takes place in the home. Incorporating discipline with productive reinforcement can only benefit everyone.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave, Norwalk CT06851

203-847-6528

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

Simple real life self defense: by Calasanz

Click here for great images of the Beauty & Reality of the Calasanz System!!!

Calasanz teaches simple, yet effective techniques that can be applied to real life situations making it the perfect system for military personnel, law enforcement officers, women, and children.

Someone in the military or on the police force can easily catch on and use the Calasanz System in conjunction with the maneuvers they learn in basic training or the academy, our system will assist them in hand-to-hand combat by using strong, effective strikes that will quickly end a dangerous situation.  

Children can also benefit from the system, like Robert who was brought in by his father Keith Bedel (a Marine) who was also a Calasanz student. Robert was asked, “Do you know how to make a fist?” The kid made a good, tight fist but he was taught by Calasanz to NOT attack the kids that bullied him, but rather to take a deep breath and put fear into the bully by throwing a punch that ends up one inch from their head. Calasanz tells “his kids” they are never allowed to strike anyone, only to give constructive lessons to bullies so if a bully strikes you, just block everything he throws at you, this will deter your attacker. Charles and Patty Mastellone of Ridgefield brought their two children, Charles and Chris to Calasanz because of bullying, because they followed the rules Calasanz set forth and his way to deal with bullies, their bully problem ended after two weeks of training.

Calasanz prefers to teach in a way that no one gets severely injured, even when his students take a punch they do not get knocked down due to basic, fundamental techniques taught to students from day one. Those basic techniques are reflected in physical arts which were primarily used by women until more men started using those exercises in the year 2000. At Calasanz we compare physical arts to Wing Chun because Wing Chun was created by a woman for women and now men use the ancient Chinese martial art just like they use physical arts and both are practiced around the world. Physical arts became a different way to practice martial arts techniques without having to fight, so much so that the women that trained with Calasanz in the 90s were so talented they could hurt anyone, men included. Two instances that stand out were Tom Barcello finding out how strong Rebecca James Lyon was one day, and Peter Valis with a minor injury after Dolly kicked him. Even Calasanz knew if Rebecca attacked him the way she did Tom, even he would have felt what Tom felt if he did not defend her attack aggressively.     

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave,Norwalk CT06851

203-847-6528

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

PHYSICAL ARTS – AN EVOLUTION OF MARTIAL ARTS (Part 1): by CALASANZ

CALASANZ PHYSICAL ARTS® evolved out of the martial arts tradition. It is the fastest way to get into shape and learn self-defense. Our system grew out of two programs I established to accommodate students who asked for special training. The first program was primarily used to improve athletic performance, called the YOUNG ATHLETES. Parents who trained with me or heard about my school asked if I could do something to improve their children’s athletic performance. I took the best the martial arts had to offer and combined them in a training system to maximize athletic conditioning and skill in a relatively short time. I worked with athletes specializing in tennis, soccer, football, basketball, ice hockey, dance, gymnastics and baseball to get fast results.

Another component of CALASANZ PHYSICAL ARTS® is the self-defense piece. This came out of a request from law enforcement officers; fire fighters and military personnel who wanted to get into shape and learn hardcore self-defense without having to spend years studying a traditional martial art. These people had no time for belts or tournaments. They had to worry about survival. I devised a one-month intensive to accomplish these goals.

Both programs were so successful that I decided to combine them into one program for the benefit of the general public. CALASANZ PHYSICAL ARTS® is popular because of its ability to get quick results and to keep you interested in your training. In creating this system, I designed a collection of exercises and techniques that focus on developing power, grounding, balance, endurance and flexibility.

There are so many different exercises in the system that boredom is impossible! I have created many variations on the basic exercises…from moving in different directions to working out in a seated or standing position. I love to change up the exercises from time to time to keep your workout fresh and to keep your muscles guessing.

CALASANZ PHYSICAL ARTS® is a great alternative to working out at a gym on machines, free weights or with a personal trainer. It’s a system that gets you into shape, teaches you how to defend yourself and keeps your workout fresh and exciting.

To be continued…

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave,Norwalk CT06851

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

 

Why CALASANZ KARATE AND KUNG-FU SYSTEM over your local karate studio?

Why CALASANZ KARATE AND KUNG-FU SYSTEM over your local karate studio? We have one of the largest facilities in New England for training and exercise. We have developed a refined system of five disciplines specifically to improve your hockey skills. Calasanz Kickboxing and Goju-Ryu Karate techniques yield explosive leg power, shoulder strength, and forearm strength. Wing Chun Kung-Fu and American Boxing techniques enhance grounding and balance skills. We also teach injury prevention skills and have helped many individuals rehabilitate themselves.

The plan is tailored to fit your hectic athletic schedule. We recommend one day per week in season and one – two days per week out of season. Personalized, group, family, or team plans are available. This program is for ages 5 and above.

If you are a female hockey player, you must realize how popular this sport has become in the last few months because of the women’s U.S.A. Hockey Team’s past achievement of winning the Olympic Gold Medal. Colleges, particularly Ivy League Colleges, will be recruiting for their hockey programs for years to come. We feel our system of training, exercise, and athleticism might give you that competitive edge against another athlete of comparable hockey skills, thereby helping you fulfill your dreams.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave.Norwalk,CT06851

1-800-414-9544

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

Are you an individual that wants to become more competitive in athletics? by Calasanz

Are you trying to make the travel team instead of the rec. team? Possibly, you’re trying to be selected to the Varsity team instead of the J. V. team. College hockey may be your dream or maybe you just want to beat the Canadians when your team competes in Canada.

My system of training and exercise creates total body conditioning for any sport. It is a unique and simplistic system anyone can learn. We start with flexibility, stretching, and light weight exercises. We improve all athletic skills by teaching fully coordinated body movements. We teach an individual how to train aggressively yet intelligently. After the fundamentals are understood, we make your techniques sport specific for hockey.

The benefits of my system yields explosive leg power, improves stride length, and increases leg speed…as forearm and shoulder strength improves, as you will stick handling, soft hands, and wrist shot techniques improve. My system of hip movements will enhance your checking, slap shot, and taking skills. We will increase your hip flexion and hip extension strength. With years of training in my system, your peripheral vision will improve dramatically. Your foot speed, hand speed, concentration, and hand-eye coordination will all get noticeably better. We even teach breathing techniques to help you relax between shifts. The balance techniques we teach are unique to our system and are very, very effective

We utilize different exercises for male and female athletes. Our techniques for women maintain femininity yet increase strength and endurance beyond comparison. We incorporate plyometric exercises to improve and complement speed techniques. We work hard to build a strong foundation, so that when you begin lifting heavier weights to excel in Midget, Junior, or College hockey, you have developed total body strength and excellent flexibility, through our system of training.

We give you the mental strength to accept challenges you normally wouldn’t accept. We develop the physical strengths and confidence to accomplish those challenges. We use positive motivation techniques to help individuals achieve their desired results.

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave.Norwalk,CT06851

1-800-414-9544

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

www.westportboxing.com

Are You Teaching Martial Arts or Self-Esteem? By Calasanz

In order to attract children, many martial art schools advertise that martial arts training helps develop self-esteem.  This promise is directed to parents in hopes of convincing them that there is more to martial arts than just learning how to fight.  While this is true, I believe that it has been taken to extremes.  I don’t intend to criticize my colleagues.  This is merely an observation that I have made after dealing with the countless students who have come from other schools.

An injustice is done to students when the instructor offers too much praise at the expense of critiquing technique and demanding higher standards.  Students, both adults and children, like hearing nice words.  From a business perspective, it’s all about making the customer happy.  When customers are happy, they keep coming back.  From a martial art perspective, however, it is deceiving.  This deception leads to the instructor avoiding corrections so that his student’s ego will not be bruised or offended.  For example, one student who had earned a black belt at another school told me that the instructor praised him even when he was hit or knocked down by a lower ranked student.  He would tell him that he “did great!”  Over time, the student believes what the teacher is telling him.

In reality, it is the instructor’s responsibility to admonish the black belt who should know better.  If he doesn’t, then he shouldn’t be wearing the belt.  It’s dishonest to promote a student just to boost his self-esteem.  This practice is widespread especially when it comes to training children.  Some teachers will tell parents that monthly testing is great for their kids’ self-esteem.  In all honesty, the only benefit is to the school’s cash register. 

Traditional martial arts instructors were hard on their students because they wanted them to learn.  In circles that still hold on to this tradition, the tougher the teacher is on you, the more he likes you and wants you to succeed.  They show their concern by demanding more from you. 

A realistic approach to teaching is particularly important when a student has made it known that he is enrolling because he wants to learn how to protect himself. For the student who wants to study martial arts as an alternative to other fitness programs, I say let them have fun.  There is room in martial arts for all types.  But if the student wants self-defense or a parent wants to help a child who is being bullied, this is a different story.  What good will kind words do them when their personal safety is in danger?

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave.Norwalk,CT06851

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com

A Lifetime of Lessons – Calasanz Extended Biography: The Early Years – Part One

I was raised on a farm in the Dominican Republic.  One of my earliest memories of the fighting arts was through my father’s fascination with boxing.  I remember how he used to get excited every time his favorite boxer landed a punch.  My father wanted me to be a boxer.  He and some of his brothers were considered the strongest men on the farm.  He noticed the same family traits in me and encouraged me to go into boxing. He saw at an early age that I had natural talent and power. He even offered to sponsor my career in it.  Although I didn’t take the path of a boxer, my father respected the fact that despite my power, I was not a bully.  Being exposed to boxing as a young child, I always knew that I wanted to be a fighter but I didn’t see the point of two people getting into the ring to fight for no reason.  The mission behind my desire to be a fighter wasn’t about titles, trophies or glory.  It was about self-defense and defense of others.  It was about sticking up for the underdog. It was about survival.

As a kid, I was very creative and liked to entertain people in town by singing and dancing.  I was also a very hard working farm boy and my family and neighbors took notice.  So did my classmates who were very jealous of the attention I was getting in the neighborhood.  I started having problems in school and knew that at some point, I was going to have to stand up for myself.  I didn’t tell my parents what was going on and resolved to deal with the problems myself.  While part of me was scared, another part of me was very excited.  I had always identified with the underdog and was a defender of those who were picked on or unable to fight back.

I remember one day when I was ten years old, my father sent me downtown on a horse to pick up a 200-pound bag of rice.  As made my way back home, I noticed a man insulting one of the women in my neighborhood.  I yelled at him to leave her alone, but he yelled back “Listen little rabbit, you are too small to tell me what to do.”  I jumped off the horse and went after this guy who was about three times my size and age.  I fought as hard as I could.  Finally someone broke up the fight.  I thought I was going to choke him to death!!  My father found out about it and told me never to do that again, especially against someone who had so much physical advantage.  The woman never forgot what I did for her that day.  That was the greatest reward.

It was at this time that I also realized the power that could be generated in the legs.  I was milking one of our cows, which was in a particularly bad mood that day.  So she kicked me!  I got so angry that I got up, took a step back and kicked her in the stomach, knocking her down.  My father saw what I had done and gave me a spanking.  Even though I was being punished, I couldn’t believe what I had done. 

To be continued…

Calasanz Martial Arts and Fitness

507 Westport Ave, Norwalk CT 06851

www.calasanz.com

www.interdojo.com

www.the-perfectfit.com